Today is the feast of St. Thomas Aquinas, a patron saint of schools and sacred theology. The Diocese of Phoenix has a parish and an elementary school named after him.
PARISH/SCHOOL FACTS: (Thomas and Litchfield roads in Avondale)
- Established June 20, 1975 and was the only diocesan parish established that year. Now serves 4,200 families. Detailed parish history.
- Started as a mission of St. Mary’s Basilica as early as 1913. Ran by a Claretian priest from 1925 to 1943.
- Later a mission of Our Lady of Perpetual Hep Parish in Glendale and then St. John Vianney Parish in Goodyear.
- Original location in Litchfield Park, but sold and moved due to growth projections. New church dedicated in 2003, same year the school opened. Still serves preschool-grade 8.
- Cruciform-shaped parish where Bishop Eduardo A. Nevares was ordained in 2010 and 16 new deacons were ordained Nov 2012.
SAINT FACTS: (1225-1274)
- among Church’s greatest writers and theologians with Summa Theologiae, being a standard for centuries and the second-most consulted work at the Council of Trent
- a perfect model of childlike simplicity and goodness
- a Dominican priest who suffered with the poor and needy. Full bio from Biogprahy.com
- tender devotion to St. Agnes (who also has a diocesan school and parish in the Valley)
- nicknamed the “dumb ox” because of his silent ways and huge size, but he was really a brilliant student